Area of no-swim advisory for Paw Creek Cove reduced after bacteria levels improve

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The extent of a no-swimming advisory for Paw Creek Cove issued after a Catawba River sewage spill has been reduced to the area nearest the discharge, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services said Friday.

Water samples found that bacteria counts in the water are now within safe limits for all but the area near Old Dowd Road, where the Paw Creek Lift Station is located, the agency said.

Water tests last weekend found elevated levels of E. coli bacteria in the cove after nearly 850,000 gallons of raw sewage — more than enough to fill an Olympic-size swimming pool — spilled into the Catawba on July 16.

That led to a swimming advisory for the entirety of Paw Creek Cove announced last Saturday.

The spill happened near the Paw Creek Lift Station as a construction crew was working there, according to Cam Coley, a spokesman for Charlotte Water. It was the largest spill of untreated wastewater in Charlotte in more than a year.

According to Friday’s press release, Storm Water Services staff will continue to monitor water quality in the back of the cove until conditions are deemed safe for human contact, at which point the advisory will be lifted entirely.

Visit for more information regarding “No Swimming” Advisories.

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